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Former Revenue Director Sentenced to Life for Vat Tax Scam

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Former Revenue Director Sentenced to Life for Vat Tax Scam

A Former Revenue Department director-general in Thailand has been sentenced to life imprisonment over a Vat Tax refund scam in 2012.

The Central Criminal Court for Corruption and Misconduct Cases ruled yesterday that Satit Rungkasiri and three accomplices were guilty of VAT Tax refund falsification which caused damages worth over 3 billion baht to the Revenue Department.

According to the court, Satit and Supakij or Siripong Riyakarn, a former chief of the district 22 office (Bang Rak), conspired to carry out corruption and conducted malfeasance of duty by concealing falsified VAT Tax refunds for 25 companies which were not eligible for them. This resulted in a loss of 3.09 billion baht to the state from 2012 to 2013.

The court handed down sentences of life imprisonment to the two accused.

The court also gave a jail sentence of six years and eight months to Prasit Anyachote, who received the tax refund money and later shared it with Satit and Supakij. The judge acquitted a fourth defendant, Kittisak Anyachote, who is a son of Prasit.

The first, second and the third defendants were ordered by the court to return 3.09 billion baht to the state.

Online platforms to Pay Vat Tax

In other finance news, around 20 large overseas online platform operators plan to register as value-added tax (VAT) payers in Thailand, says Ekniti Nitithanprapas, director-general of the Revenue Department.

The move comes in response to enforcement of the e-service tax law from Sept 1, when overseas businesses providing online services in Thailand will be required to register for 7% VAT liability if their annual income exceeds 1.8 million baht.

E-service businesses liable for VAT payments include those offering download services for movies, games, stickers, brokerage services and advertisements.

He said the department already developed an online channel for operators to easily register for VAT and make payments. Most foreign online businesses are cooperating with the law, Mr Ekniti said.

The department expects tax revenue collection from the upcoming e-service levy to total more than 5 billion baht per year as the pandemic has moved traffic to online platforms, he said.

Under the tax law, operators estimate how much tax they should pay.

The department uses a post-audit process to examine their VAT payment by seeking international cooperation among countries on their tax payment records. Around 60 countries have adopted this e-service tax.

The department is pushing for the enactment of organic laws in e-service tax law. The details of the organic bills have been approved by the cabinet and are being scrutinized by the Council of State.

The introduction of the e-service tax law is part of the country’s ongoing tax reform to improve revenue and ensure fair treatment for all.

Recommended Read: The registered agent’s job is to provide a reliable way for the state to contact an official representative of your business at any time, which is especially important if your business is ever sued.  This resource takes a closer look at registered agents in 50 US states.

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